Bulgaria: Ready for snow clearing – and winter tourists
Bulgaria’s Regional Development Minister is boasting of the country being ready to cope with snowy winter conditions – and the country’s Tourism Minister is boasting of expectations of a healthy number of tourists coming for Bulgaria’s winter resort season.
Bulgaria’s Minister of Regional Development and Public Works Lilyana Pavlova said on October 24 that there are contracts for winter road maintenance covering absolutely all areas.
Pavlova, speaking at a news conference on a day that autumn leaves were merely yellowing and with only the highest peaks touched with the the lightest caresses of snow, said that more than 3000 machines would be deployed for winter road cleaning.
The deadline for readiness of companies for winter cleaning of road infrastructure is November 1, Pavlova said, adding that it was in the first 10 days of November that worsening weather was expected.
Meanwhile, on October 24, Tourism Minister Nikolina Angelkova told Bulgarian news agency BTA that this year’s winter tourism levels are expected to remain the same as last year’s, when more than 1.2 million foreign tourists visited Bulgaria, which was 4.5 per cent more than the previous year.
Photo: (c) Clive Leviev-Sawyer
According to figures from central Bulgarian National Bank, revenue from international tourism between December 2015 and March 2016 exceeded 827 million leva, meaning growth of close to five per cent compared to the previous season.
Growth was observed in a number of important markets, such as Macedonia (23 per cent), Turkey more than 13 per cent), Serbia (17 per cent), the United Kingdom (seven per cent), Israel (19 per cent), the Czech Republic (39 per cent), and Hungary (34 per cent).
Angelkova, quoting Bulgarian tourism industry data, said that sales are going strong for the upcoming winter season, while there is an increased interest from Romania and Moldova. According to preliminary data about Plovdiv Airport’s winter schedule, tourists from Israel, Ireland, Russia and the UK already have shown interest in Bulgaria as a tourist destination.
(Main photo: (c) Clive Leviev-Sawyer)